The Crucial Test You Need to Take Before Using a New Acne Treatment

Augusta Falletta
woman using face lotion

Getty Images

These days, it seems like just about every skin care brand out there has at least one acne treatment in their suite of products. Whether it’s a spot treatment or an overnight mask, there’s a pimple fighting formula in every form possible. The one thing you need to be weary of, though, is having an allergic reaction to a new acne treatment.

According to the Food and Drug Administration, consumers have been reporting allergic reactions when using gels, face washes, pads, and other acne treatments that contain salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide. Though rare, the allergic reactions are potentially deadly, causing swelling of the face and difficulty breathing. It’s still unclear whether the individual ingredients are causing the reactions, or if the combination of ingredients is more to blame.

MORE: How to Get Rid of Acne: Everything You Need to Know for the Clearest Skin Possible

The best way to protect yourself from potentially harmful allergic reactions is to test the acne treatment on a small patch of skin before applying it all over your face (or wherever you’re experiencing acne). For three days, dab a small amount of product on a small area like the back of your wrist. If your skin is fine after three days, you’ll be able to use the product safely as directed. If you experience any kind of adverse reaction, stop using the treatment immediately and talk to your dermatologist.